Friday, 28 August 2009

Machins In Spain??

I suppose as I am now a resident of Spain it was bound to happen . A special Spring Stampex 2000 folder with Machin and Spanish connections via Brian Horton has come to my attention.

This is a specially produced folder from Afinsa, which shows the 1850 35 pta issue. This folder is actually commemorating the 150th Anniversary of the very first Spanish stamp. The post mark which I found really interesting is tied together with a 1st class NVI millennium Machin and a special commemorative Stampex cancel.

The text is written by Javier Linares and reads as follows :

The first Postage Stamps of Spain

The appearance of the first stamps in England 1840 did not go unnoticed in the progress hungry world of the 19th century. It was not so much the novelty of the stamp it self, which was rather insignificant, as the fiscal advantages that receipts from carrying correspondence would yield.

This was a key element in the reform that resulted in the penny black during the reign of Queen Victoria.

On the 17th August 1843 Minister fermin Caballero , in the name of the provisional government, sent an order to the Director General of the Post Office ordering the establishment of pre paid postage for correspondence. The order was full of good intentions and the minister himself was fascinated by not so much the stamps but the stamped envelopes which were already in use in England. Especially the famous and ephemeral " Mulready".

The order detailed how the reform of "stamped envelopes should be reduced to the fewest different suitable categories, to be issued by the offices of the Inland Revenue and be available in all inhabited places".

However it was another seven years before this innovation became reality. It is true that politaical stability was not at all propitious to the introduction of modernising measures.

It was necessary to wait until 24th October 1844 when another government minister, Lous Jose Sartorious, The Count of San Lois, established by Royal decree the payment of postage through the use of stamps.

Two months later official instructions were given on postage in which it was indicated that " From 1st January 1850 the present method of postage and registration of letters will be abolished. Any person wishing to post or register a letter, from that date onwards, must do so by means of stamps that will be sold singly or in numbers to suit the buyer.

And with dicactic eagerness it was added that "the stamps are of paper with the bust of H.M the Queen and have glue on the back so that to stick them it is only nessassary the wet the stamp"

The instuction proved to be pertinent. On New years Day 1850 the first edition of Spanish adhesive stamps went on sale made up of 5 values: A black 6 quarters; a lilac 12 quarters; a red 5 reals; a blue 6 reals and a green 10 reals. All of them displayed the portrait of the Queen Dona Isabel II engraved by Bartolime Coromina.

Spain was the tenth country in the world to use the pre paid postage system for correspondence.

Two original designs were reproduced in 1950 to commemorate the centenary of Spain's stamps (Scott Nos. C128 and 777.

For more information on classic Stamps and postmarks on stamps of Spain by William E. Critzer visit this website.

Until next time, Hasta luego.

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